A Maryland state trooper killed in June and five other officers were the first group of names engraved on the the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial during the annual Engraving Day ceremony.
Trooper Wesley Brown was shot and killed while working a department-sanctioned, off-duty security detail at a restaurant, while in full uniform. After escorting a customer who refused to pay his bill to the parking lot outside the restaurant, the suspect opened fire and fatally shot Trooper Brown.
"On June 11, 2010, the Maryland State Police lost a dedicated and heroic officer in the line of duty," according to Craig W. Floyd, chairman and CEO of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, which maintains the nation's monument to fallen officers. "Trooper Brown is remembered today as a hero to so many … the colleagues he served with, the young men he mentored and the family members he loved so much."
On Wednesday, Col. Terrence Sheridan addressed a delegation of family members and loved ones, local citizens and police officials from the Maryland State Police to witness the unveiling of Trooper Brown's name and the names of five other courageous law enforcement officers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
"Today, we continue the process of remembrance and healing that began almost a year ago in Maryland, and which has now moved here to Washington, D.C.," Floyd said in a statement. "As we unveil the engraved names of these heroes on the marble walls of this national monument, we send a very powerful signal that their service and sacrifice were not in vain and that they will be forever honored here at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial."
These heroes' names are being added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, which is located in Judiciary Square in downtown Washington, D.C. Dedicated in 1991, the Memorial now honors 19,298 peace officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history.
All 316 newly engraved names will be formally dedicated on the Memorial during the 23rd annual Candlelight Vigil on the evening of May 13, which is part of the National Police Week observance. Approximately 20,000 people attend the event each May. In addition, the vigil will be videocast live over the Internet, allowing family members, colleagues and others who cannot make it to Washington, D.C., to experience the ceremony in their communities.
Trooper Brown's name is being engraved on Panel 19-East, Line 27, of the Memorial, along with the following names: City Marshal A. E. Cook, Como (Colo.) Marshals Office, who died April 7, 1984; Officer Billy Clardy, Jr., Huntsville (Ala.) Police Department, who died May 3, 1978; Officer Thor Soderberg, Chicago (Ill.) Police Department, who died July 7, 2010; Deputy Sheriff Kory Dahlvig, Vilas County (Wisc.) Sheriff's Office, who died April 25, 2010; and Officer Christopher Upton, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service, who died March 5, 2010.